StoryCorps: Charles Costello

Aug 12, 2010

Elizabeth Claudet and her husband, Joseph, sat down with her father, Charles Costello, on March 29 to talk about his experiences while living most of his 96 years in Louisiana. He grew up in DeRidder in western Louisiana, where as a boy he delivered groceries in a cart pulled by a goat.

Costello's family later moved to New Orleans where they ran a grocery store. After briefly relocating to Shreveport, they settled back in New Orleans where their store operated through Prohibition and the Depression. Sometimes it wasn't at all what it seemed, and there were times when they had an occasional brush with the law.

ALSO:In this extended conversation, Costello talks about signing up for the armed forces in 1942. He had a slight limp from a childhood illness, but was accepted into the U.S. Army. He started his service in the south, with a brief stint in Utah before heading to New Jersey and ultimately overseas. Here are some of his memories from that time.

StoryCorps New Orleans interviews were recorded by StoryCorps, a national project to record and collect stories of everyday people. This excerpt was selected and produced by WWNO producer Eileen Fleming, with support from the WWNO Productions Fund and from Villere & Co., managing the investments of New Orleans' families for almost 100 years. Listen again at or at